Lady Chants drop season debut to College of Charleston

The Coastal Carolina women’s basketball team fell to in-state rival College of Charleston 56-38 in the season opener for both teams Friday at TD Arena.

The setback snapped the Chanticleers’ seven-game win streak in season openers, which dated back to the 2005-06 season.

Junior forward Alexx Puckett tied a career-high with nine points to lead Coastal, while junior guard Angelica Henry scored eight points and grabbed a career-best 12 rebounds.

Sophomore guard A.J. Jordan set career highs with 10 rebounds, five steals and four assists.

Both teams started slow out of the gate, but Coastal grabbed an 8-4 lead just past the midway point of the first half on a layup by sophomore guard Jena Hamrick. A free throw by Puckett with 2:32 left in the half put the Chants up 18-17, but Charleston scored 10 of the next 11 points to take a lead it would not relinquish. Coastal did end the first half on a positive note as Henry made a pull-up 3-pointer from the top of the arc at the buzzer to get the Chants within 27-22 at the break.

Puckett then opened the second half with a layup to make it a three-point game, but Coastal was unable to get any closer as it struggled on the offensive end. The Chanticleers shot 24 percent from the field in the game while committing 34 turnovers.

Charleston, meanwhile, improved its field-goal shooting from 25 percent in the first half to 32 percent in the second, and was able to pull away over the game’s final eight minutes.

Senior center Latisha Harris and junior guard Alyssa Frye combined to score 31 points for the Cougars. Harris scored 12 of her 17 in the first half, while Frye made three 3-pointers in the game, two of them coming during Charleston’s run late in the first half.

Coastal returns to action Monday, Nov. 12 for its home opener, and first-ever game at The HTC Center. The Chants take on North Carolina Central, with tip-off set for 7 p.m.

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